It still seems so strange that fireworks are legal here in Germany for New Years’ Eve (aka Silvester). At home in Australia they have been completely illegal for years because of the danger that a spark could ignite a fire in summer. And then to see so many of the usually mild-mannered and law-abiding German citizens blithely letting off crackers and fireworks in the streets and with children running around blindly… it’s so strange!
So, a Melbourne friend who lives in Bochum came down to celebrate with us which was lovely. He’s so close, really, but we hardly ever get together. Anyway, we picked him up from the Hauptbahnhof and walked to our place where we had a few drinks and something to eat while we chatted. Soon enough, it was almost midnight so we wandered down to the river bank with a lovely drink (Turkish Raki with soda – delicious!) and try not to get hit in the face with any crackers or debris.
The clock struck midnight and we simply watched for a while, stunned at the mayhem – fireworks being shot across a busy road, children running around with matches – until a fierce wind suddenly made us very cold. We wandered back home for another few drinks and the warmth of friends.
There are a few more photos from the night on Flickr.
Happy New Year.